Thursday, November 30, 2023

SKILL DEVELOPMENT SCAM CASE: Apex Court adjourns hearing in Naidu’s quash plea to Oct 9

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PNS | Vijayawada

In a setback to TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu, the Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to pass any interim relief on a quash petition filed by Telugu Desam Party (TDP) supremo and former AP chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu, who is behind bars in connection with the alleged Skill Development Corporation scam case.

A bench comprising Justices Aniruddha Bose and Bela M. Trivedi adjourned the matter to October 9. In the meantime, the bench asked the State government to place before it compilation of all documents filed before the Andhra Pradesh High Court.

Senior advocate Harish Salve, appearing for Naidu, said that an inquiry against Naidu could not have been conducted without getting sanction from the Governor of the State. He contended that Section 17A of the Prevention of Corruption Act, which disables police from conducting any inquiry or investigation against a public servant except with prior approval, was introduced to prevent abuse of the criminal procedure.

Senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi added that every inquiry into an allegation “where the alleged offence is relatable to any recommendation made or decision taken by the public servant” requires a prior sanction. In the last hearing held on September 27, Justice SV Bhatti of the Supreme Court had recused himself from hearing the matter.
Later on the same day, a bench headed by the CJI DY Chandrachud did not pass any directions for an urgent hearing on Naidu’s plea by a different bench or grant him any interim relief.

Senior advocate Sidharth Luthra had pleaded that the former Andhra CM was being “looped in FIRs after FIRs” only because of the upcoming 2024 general polls. Naidu has approached the Supreme Court by filing a Special Leave Petition after a single judge bench of Justice S. Reddy of the Andhra Pradesh High Court on September 22 dismissed his petition to quash the FIR registered against him and to set aside his judicial remand.

Judgment reserved on CBN’s anticipatory bail petition

The AP high court on Tuesday reserved the judgment on the anticipatory bail petition filed by TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu in the Inner Ring Road alignment scam. The hearing by the counsel of Chandrababu, Siddharth Luthra made his presentation through virtual mode. Advocate General Sriram presented his argument on behalf of the AP CID. The counsel of Naidu brought to the notice of the AP HC that only out of political vendetta, a case was filed against Naidu by the state government. After the completion of the argument from both sides, the judge reserved the judgment on the anticipatory bail petition in the IRR scam where Chandrababu Naidu was Accused 1.

Lokesh to appear before CID on Oct 10

In a relief to TDP general secretary Nara Lokesh, the AP High Court on Tuesday ordered the adjournment of CID inquiry to October 10 in the Inner Ring Road scam. The hearing was held in the court on the lunch motion petition filed by Lokesh in the case. Objecting to the 41 A notice served by the CID, Lokesh filed a lunch motion petition, P Venkateswarulu argued on behalf of Lokesh and explained that Lokesh was a shareholder in Heritage company and further brought to the notice of the court that it was reasonable to ask his client about the company procedure. On the other hand, the advocate of the AP CID asked that they not pressurize for the documents and attend the hearing on Wednesday itself. After hearing the arguments of both the advocates the court issued orders that Lokesh should attend the CID inquiry on October 10.

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